Big West Oil LLC agreed to a $175,000 penalty and to pay about $18 million to implement emissions controls at the company’s North Salt Lake, Utah, refinery. The deal, announced in late August by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Justice Department, resolves alleged violations of the Clean Air Act.
“This settlement will result in substantial reductions in harmful air pollution and, building on previous settlements with area refineries, marks another step forward in improving the quality of air Utahns breathe in the Salt Lake City area,” said Robert G. Dreher, acting assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division. “Big West Oil will be required to install advanced technology pollution controls that will benefit the health and environment of its neighbors and future generations.”
The company committed to a reduction in sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide and particulate emissions at the refinery, as well as improved chemical monitoring. Big West admits no liability as part of the agreement.
“As a company, Big West is committed to responsible environmental stewardship,” a company spokesman told the Davis Clipper newspaper, “while providing great jobs for the state of Utah and supplying the fuel that runs our economy and benefits all of its citizens.”
“EPA continues to secure significant settlements with refineries that benefit public health and improve air quality in our communities,” said Shaun McGrath, EPA’s regional administrator in Denver. “Today’s agreement will help bring Big West Oil’s refinery up to date with industry standards to protect the environment.”
Big West on its website says it’s “committed to be the leading energy company in the Rocky Mountain Region.” The North Salt Lake City refinery employs 185 people and supplies fuels in seven states. It has a capacity of 35,000 barrels per day.